why do wisdom teeth grow?


why do wisdom teeth grow?

In: Biology

The same reason all other teeth grow – our genetics contain instructions for those teeth to grow.

Now, they are problematic because, over time, we have evolved smaller jaws than our ancestors but did not also evolve fewer teeth. The jaws of our ancestors had more than enough space for wisdom teeth, but our modern jaws are just too small.

Like many aspects of evolution, it is one of those things that just didn’t change because it just didn’t matter much to overall survival.

Evolution has brought humans as far as Paleolithic times, meaning our bodies are designed for the Stone Age. Back then people would lose teeth throughout their lifetime and wisdom teeth were made to fill those gaps. Now that we have standards for dental hygiene this, we do not lose teeth and thus wisdom teeth simply overcrowd our jaws.